Star Trek (1966–1969)
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Balance of Terror 

The Enterprise must decide on its response when a Romulan ship makes a destructively hostile armed probe of Federation territory.


Vincent McEveety


Paul Schneider, Gene Roddenberry (created by)

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Episode complete credited cast:
William Shatner ... Capt. Kirk
Leonard Nimoy ... Mr. Spock
Mark Lenard ... Romulan Commander
Paul Comi ... Stiles
Lawrence Montaigne ... Decius
DeForest Kelley ... Dr. McCoy
Grace Lee Whitney ... Yeoman Rand
George Takei ... Sulu
James Doohan ... Scott
Nichelle Nichols ... Uhura
Stephen Mines ... Tomlinson
Barbara Baldavin Barbara Baldavin ... Angela
Garry Walberg ... Hansen
John Warburton ... The Centurion


The Enterprise answers a distress call from Federation Outpost #4, a monitoring station on the Federation side of the neutral zone with the Romulan Empire. The outposts were established over a century ago and no one has actually seen a Romulan. The Romulan vessel seems to have some type of high energy explosive device as well as a cloaking device to make the ship invisible. When it appears that Romulans bear a strong resemblance to Vulcans, Kirk must deal with a rebellious crew member. He must also engage in a dangerous cat and mouse game with a very intelligent Romulan commander. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

15 December 1966 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


This takes place in 2266. See more »


While officiating at a wedding ceremony, Captain Kirk says, "Since the days of the first wooden vessels, all ship-masters have had one happy privilege: that of uniting two people in the bonds of matrimony." This is false; while the fictional Starfleet's regulations may allow captains to perform marriage ceremonies, there is no record of any maritime service in Earth's history having done so. The America, British, and Russian/Soviet navies have always specifically prohibited their commanding officers from doing this. See more »


Stiles: We enter the Neutral Zone in one minute, Captain.
Dr. McCoy: Do we violate the treaty, Captain?
Mr. Spock: They did, Doctor.
Dr. McCoy: Once inside, they can claim we did. A set-up. They want war, we furnish the provocation.
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Alternate Versions

Special Enhanced version Digitally Remastered with new exterior shots and remade opening theme song See more »


Referenced in Star Trek: The Next Generation: Data's Day (1991) See more »


Theme From Star Trek
Written by Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

First Romulan Appearance - Great Episode
3 January 2017 | by Rainey-DawnSee all my reviews

Season 1, episode 14. The Enterprise answers a distress call from the Federation Outpost #4 - they have been attacked. When the Enterprise heads that way, they witness F.O. #4 being destroyed on their viewing screen. The Romulan vessel remains cloaked until ready to fire, very much the way the Klingon Bird of Prey does. Stiles is at the helm and tells Kirk that he's sure it is Romulans - he's learned this from his family. Romulans have not been seen in more than a century so no one knows what a Romulan looks like but the Enterprise does catch a quick view on their monitor of the Romulan Commander, this gives Stiles a reason to sneer at Spock who never has seen a Romulan either. Kirk must decide on what to do, they are at the Neutral Zone - do they attack or let the Romulan ship go after witness first hand the attack on and disintegration of F.O. #4?

One of the better Star Trek episodes that you'll ever see. It seems to really capture what the series is all about in the brightest light possible.


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